Grade K-1

What Is This and What Was It Used For?

Historians are observant. In this introduction to inquiry lesson, students will learn some of the skills and strategies historians use to learn about the past. Students will use their historian skills to uncover a mystery object as they notice, wonder, infer, and compare.

Before starting a Private i History Detectives unit, use this lesson or the “What Can We Learn from a Hat?” mystery as an introduction to inquiry lesson to introduce your students to the Private i History Detectives Team and the skills historians use.

iCivics en español! Student and class materials for this mystery are available in Spanish.

Teacher Resources

Get access to lesson plans, teacher guides, student handouts, and other teaching materials.

  • Detailed lesson plan with step-by-step instructions
  • Student Activity Handouts as Google Docs and printable PDFs